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Events

THE LIMASSOL DISTRICT ARCHAEOLOGICAL MUSEUM

The Archaeological Museum in Limassol  was founded in 1948 and was initially housed  in a part of the Limassol Castle. During the conflicts of 1964 it  remained close as it was transferred to the National Guard. Construction activities both for the new modern Museum and the Court House began in 1972.
The new exhibition was rearranged in March 1975 , under  extremely difficult circumstances related to the recent Turkish invasion of  the island.

The Castle itself was restored  and  its prison cells (dating to a reconstruction phase during the Ottoman period) were adapted to house the new Cypriot Medieval Museum. The Castle exhibition consists of artefacts of the latest periods of Cypriot History, beginning from the 4th and 5th centuries AD and covering all the historical periods  to the early phases of the Ottoman period, 16th-17th cent.

The Archaeological Museum is housing  antiquities  that have been found during systematic and rescue excavations of the Department of Antiquities of Cyprus and of the foreign Archaeological Missions in the City and the District of Limassol as well. Through the exhibited material the visitors can follow the development of civilisation in the island from the  9thmillennium to the end of antiquity (Late Roman period).

 

Working hours

Monday                                  8.00 am -  4.00 pm
Tuesday                                 8.00 am -  4.00 pm
Wednesday                           8.00 am -  4.00 pm      
Thursday                               8.00 am -  4.00 pm
Friday                                     8.00 am -  4.00 pm

 

CHRONOLOGICAL TABLE

 

PREHISTORIC PERIOD

Preneolithic period- Akroteri culture

10.000-8500 BC

Early Neolithic- Shillourokambos culture

8η-7η Χιλιετηρίδα

 

 

Neolithic I/ Classical Neolithic

6800-6000 BC

Neolithic II/ Late Neoilithic   - Sotira culture

4500-3800 BC

Chalcolithic

3900/3800-2900/2500 BC

Erimi Culture

3600-2600 BC

 

 

Early Bronze Age

3000/2900-1900/1800 BC

Μiddle Bronze Age

1900-1600 BC

Late Bronze Age

1600-1050 BC

 

 

HISTORICAL PERIODS

Cypro-Geometric period

1100-750 BC   

Cypro-Archaic period

750-500 BC

Cypro- Classical period

500-310 BC

Hellenistic period

310-50   BC

Roman period

50 BC-324 AD

Late Roman , Early Christian or Early Byzantin period   

3247th AD

 

ARTEFACTS

In Room I the exhibition consists of artefacts from the Preneolithic site of Akrotiri- Aetokremnos,where evidence for the earliest human activity on the island has been revealed, related to the last phases of a hunter-gatherer economy. The most striking aspect is the coexistence of cultural materials with a huge assemblage of extinct Pleistocene animals, most probably pygmy Hippopotamus and pygmy Elephant which were probably being exploited by humans.

The process of Neolithisation is attested by the recently discovered site ofShillourokambos  in Parekklishia which belongs to Aceramic Neolithic I and dates as far back as the end of the 9th millenium to the 7th millenium BC. It is the earliest Neolithic settlement of the whole island . The future rearrangement of the exhibition will  include some of the finds from that site.

In the present exhibition one can see Late Neolithic material (stone tools and ceramics ) from the Sotira Culture (Neolithic II 4500-3800) as well as material from the Chalcolithic period. The earliest phase of this period, in Limassol District, was found at Erimi Pamboula . The stone idols are the most important artefacts of this period.

The representative material of the Early Bronge Age period ( 3000/2900-1900-1800 BC) and the Middle Bronze Age (1900-1600 BC) derives mainly from the City itself and the villages of Pyrgos, Evdimou and Paramali. This is the period when the know-how of exploitation and smelting of copper was acquired. Pottery shapes are imitating shapes in organic materials, they are covered with a characteristic Red Polished slip and decorated  with plastic and incised decoration. 

During the Middle Bronge Age the forms are becoming smaller and new techniques in surface decoration such as the painted patterns, are re-introduced.
The significant  changes in culture and economy that took place in the Late Bronze Age (1650-1050 BC) are decisive for the later history of the island. 

Commercial contact with the Aegean world is becoming more intensive. The Mediterranean indigenous people already inspired by the lively spirit of the Aegean cultures gradually assimilate features of Aegean culture. New settlers on the island create a peripheral centre of Greek culture with its special peculiarities that survives to our days.

The exhibited material of the Late Bronge Age represents the stages of that development  process. Among the local ceramic products,  Base Ring and White Slip wares, the visitors can see imported Mycenean vases like the floral style cup of Mycenean IIB from Crete or local imitations. Most of them derive from rescue excavations in the city of Limassol.  A large pithos from  Kourion Pamboula,   a settlement that according to historians was founded by the Peloponnesian Argives,  is  of local production and was used for storage or as a transport container for the exported products of Cyprus to the Mediterranean world. (The main part of the Kourion area finds are exhibited in the local Museum  of Episkopi).

Some contemporary artefacts from the necropolis of a  palatial monumental building at Alassa are also exhibited.

From the end of the Late Bronze Age (1050 BC) to the Hellenistic period,(325 BC) when Alexander the Great included Cyprus in his great Macedonian state, abolishing the Ancient Cypriot Kingdoms (310 BC) , there is little historical information about the two kingdoms of our area (Amathus and Kourion). It is a period generally known for its continuous change of rulers (Phoenicians, Assyrians, Egyptians, Persians), but it is well represented in the archaeological record of the sites of those kingdoms. The main archaeological source of information about this amalgamation of cultural influences are the rich funeral gifts of the cemeteries.

The Limassol Museum is housing the material from Amathus and its surrounding settlements and sanctuaries. Such objects are local and imported Phoenician and Aegean  pottery, minor art products like jewellery, tools, coins, clay idols and stone statuettes, relief and inscribed funerary stelae.

The Archaic phase of the great sanctuary of Aphrodite on the top of the Akropolis of Amathus is represented by a group of terracottas of Eastern origin (masks, temple models, female idols of Ashtarte) and objects of western influence (charriot and rider compositions) .

One of the most important works of art of the Museum , a free standing Hathor Capital found in the palace area of Amathus is dated to the Late Archaic period (500 BC) . A head of an eastern goddess made in the stylistic trends of the late Archaic Greek artists indicates  the fusion of cultural influences at a place where the civilization of the east meet with those of the West.

Rich funeral gifts and a group of clay statuettes found during the British period at a sanctuary in the foundation excavations of the Limassol Town  Police station belong to the Archaic period.

The Hellenistic period art production of Cyprus is following the trends of the new regime, the so called koine and foresees  the formalization of the Roman period. The exhibition in the last room consists of sculpture, plastic art , pottery, ivory objects, glass objects, lamps, funerary and dedicatory inscriptions indicating the assimilation of Cyprus to the new world.

Characteristic is a huge sculpture of the Egyptian fertility God Bes which was found in the Amathus Roman Agora and marks the survival of this Archaic cult into Roman times as well as the 4th century AD sculptures from the Fasoula workshop.

A dedicator , Sozomenos, commissigned a statue from the same workshop of Zeus Labranios ( Zeus as the God of the double axes) a survival of an old Cretan cult of the God of arts who has his residence on the mountain Ida . Levantine people made references to that God  (ugaritic texts: Baal poems) as early as the 14th century  BC , as Housor or God of the Double axe who lives in the land of Kefti (Crete).

Those figures confirm the strength and endurance of influences that  Cyprus  received, from the Aegean and the Eastern civilisations on account of the conservatism of its island environment.

 

PHOTOS - ROOM 1

1 2 1 2 1 2 1 2 1 2 1 2 1

 

PHOTOS - ROOM 2

1 2 1

 

PHOTOS - ROOM 3

1 2 1 2 1 2 1 2 1

VYRONOS / SIOKRI STR. 

Τ.Κ. 3405
TEL: 00357-5-305157
FAX: 00357-5-305173 

 

 

 
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